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Switzerland denies asylum to Guantanamo inmates

Published on 14/11/2008

14 November 2008

BERN – Amnesty International said Thursday that Switzerland has denied asylum to three Guantanamo inmates.

The Swiss Department for Migration confirmed that three prisoners at the US detention centre in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, made requests for asylum. But it refused to say what decision it has taken.

Amnesty, based in London, said the United States wants to release the men because they pose no security risk and do not face prosecution.

The human rights organisation has urged the Swiss government to reconsider because the prisoners’ home countries, Libya, Algeria and China, have refused to take them back.

The US has said there are about 60 prisoners at Guantanamo who have been approved for release, but it cannot transfer them to their home countries because American law forbids sending people to countries where they are likely to face torture or other mistreatment.

The group includes Uighurs, a Muslim minority from far west China, as well as prisoners from Algeria and Libya.

[AP / Expatica]